I've been focusing almost entirely on food for the last few weeks, so I think this will be my last post on the topic for a while. Time to move on to something new. But first:

Since moving to China I have come to appreciate a wide range of foods that I would have previously ignored. Chief among these would be dried seafood items as snack food. Who'd have thought I would develop such a palate for dried squid?

Here are my top strange but delicious Chinese snack foods:

~ Soy Boiled Eggs

Soy Egg

So simple - an egg, boiled in soy sauce, vacuum wrapped for maximum freshness and on-the-go convenience!

Soy Egg Bite

They taste just exactly like you'd expect - egg with soy. Delicious, but a little strange.

~ Spicy Peanut/Chili Mix

Chili Mix

I think this is technically meant to be a sauce or accompaniment to other foods, but I can't help it, I love this mix of peanuts, chilis, dried mushrooms and what appears to be beef jerky so much that I just eat it straight out of the jar. Chopstick skill required. Delicious, but a little strange.

~ Kim Chee Flavored Potato Chips

Potato Chips

Factoid - Chinese love snacking on potato chips and similar salty items as much as we do, but they prefer flavors that we might find a little off, like kim chee. Yes, I know that kim chee (fermented cabbage) is from Korea, but the Chinese eat it, too, especially where I live since we are very close to Korea. Other popular chip flavors are shrimp and spicy chicken. Delicious, but a little strange.

~ Dried Seaweed Strips

Seaweed

Another snack that has been popularized by the Japanese and Koreans, dried seafood strips are oddly compelling. They often come topped with a little wasabi salt or sugar. They taste like the sea and help me deal with my sushi cravings, since good sushi is not available in Linyi. Delicious, but a little strange.

~ "Corn" Dogs

Corn Dogs

I dont' really snack on these things, but I do occasionally have one or two if I need a quick lunch. These corn dogs have the shape and consistency of a short American-style hot dog, but instead of an outer cornbread coating, they have actual corn kernels cooked inside the dog. Not exactly delicious, but okay and definitely a little strange.

Okay, now for something completely normal:

Ice Cream Cone

Tiramisu Flavored Ice Cream Cone

Nothing wrong with that! I wait all winter for these! Ice cream is very scarce around here. You can get a soft-serve cone from McDonald's and a couple of varieties of ice cream cones in the summer. This version is from Nestle and is completely delicious. I don't care so much for the green pea and red bean versions, though.

And here's something completely strange:

Chicken Foot

Here's something you can chew on!

If you are of a certain age you might not find this too peculiar, but it is not something I have learned to enjoy. In my opinion chicken feet belong only in one place, and that's attached to a chicken. Nevertheless, there is a waste not want not ethic here and chicken feet are just one more edible part of the animal. Not a snack food I will be trying anytime soon. (I have eaten a duck's foot in an attempt to be culturally sensitive and it was A-W-F-U-L.)

What's your favorite snack?

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